It’s one of the most serious and solemn occasions any of us will ever face: the funeral. It’s an occasion of great emotional difficulty, of course—but it also requires attention to detail. For many men, particularly young men, the question of what to wear to a funeral is a difficult one to ask. That’s why we’ve put together this guide on how men should dress for a funeral that shows respect for the occasion.
What Men Need to Know
Legendary fashion designer Tom Ford once said that dressing well is a form of good manners. In other words, dressing well isn’t for you. It’s to put on your best appearance in consideration for others.
Nowhere is this more important than in the case of a funeral. Dressing your best—and dressing at your most appropriate—is a sign of respect to the grieving. Just as attending a funeral is a gesture of your respect, wearing the appropriate clothing is something you do for others.
With that in mind, what should you wear for a funeral? We have a few tips and rules of thumb.
Tips & Suggestions
The simple way to classify funerals is as “black tie” events—but this isn’t totally accurate. Black tie affairs can include a wide variety of events such as charity functions, for which the dress code can be substantially different than funerals. To put together a funeral-specific outfit, here’s what men will need to know:
- Dark clothing is most appropriate. Dark clothes have been a sign of mourning for a long time, which is why now’s the time to bring out your dark suit and dark tie. Try to avoid overly colorful accessories like pocket squares. Instead, err on the side of a “muted” look.
- Your best clothing is most appropriate. You might own a dark pair of jeans, but that doesn’t mean it’s going to be funeral-appropriate. Try to wear the best dark clothing you have in your wardrobe. For instance, Super 130’s Pleated Pants will be far more funeral-appropriate than Dress Denim.
- Flashy clothing is discouraged. You wouldn’t wear to a funeral what you would wear to a wedding, because the occasions are so different. That means you should try to avoid anything “flashy” you might typically wear—including even sunglasses or colorful scarves. Anything that looks to capture attention away from the funeral itself will likely be perceived as inappropriate, so keep that in mind as you dress.
- Other colors should be subdued. If you don’t have a lot of black options, try to stick to dark greys and dark blues to remain muted. For instance, “Charcoal” can be proper funeral attire in the right circumstances, as in the case of these Charcoal Super 100’s Gabardine Trousers.
A funeral can be a difficult thing—but there’s no reason that your choice in clothing should be difficult. Browse the collections at Berle to put together a wardrobe to suit any occasion, even the most challenging.